The United Nations is an international organization dedicated to promoting peace and security and sustainable economic development across the world. In pursuing those objectives, the UN works to combat financial crimes, including money laundering and terror financing, by imposing sanctions on the countries, entities, and individuals engaged in those activities.
What is the UN Sanctions List?
The UN Sanctions List – also known as the United Nations Security Council Consolidated List – includes all the individuals and entities that the organization currently subjects to sanction measures. The sanctions issued by the UN are considered and composed by the Security Council, under the authority of Article 41, Chapter VII of the UN Charter. All sanctions must be accompanied by a Security Council Resolution which establishes the precise measures to be implemented – those measures may include asset freezes and restriction of market access, along with arms embargoes travel restrictions and more.
The United Nations’ sanctions list itself is organized into two sections:
- Entities and groups
Entries in each section are listed alphabetically. Further details relating to the reasons for each sanction listing are available on the website of the corresponding UN sanctions committee responsible for the particular sanctions regime. Enforcement of sanctions and penalties for non-compliance are handled by individual member states, who may impose significant financial penalties on both individuals and entities, along with criminal charges for individuals involved in the breach.
All UN member-states must comply with the Consolidated List, which means that all banks and financial institutions within those states must implement a UN sanctions search as part of their AML/CFT compliance program. Since the UN has no direct legislative power to enforce its sanctions within member-states, domestic authorities are expected to develop and implement regulations that ensure their obligated institutions conduct UN sanctions screening as part of any wider mandated screening processes.
Like other international sanctions lists, the UN’s Consolidated List changes constantly as new entries are listed and other delisted – keeping up with the changes represents a significant compliance challenge for obligated institutions. Automated sanctions screening tools help financial institutions navigate that compliance burden. These tools deliver sanctions searches more efficiently and more accurately than a manual screening process ever could – and identify sanctioned customers dynamically.